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Thread started 21 Dec 2013 (Saturday) 21:19
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Shooting in dimly lit rooms

 
Frodge
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Dec 21, 2013 21:19 |  #1

What are you folks doing when you shoot in a dimly lot room. As an example,I have a room with a christmas trees at is lit. Is it best to just bump iso up, or bounce the flash? What method do yu use to get a good image. Example person in th room with the christmas tree lit at night. Are you using high iso, flash or what?


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BigSkyKen
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Dec 21, 2013 21:21 |  #2

High ISO, diffused flash and as big of an aperture as I can get away with...and my results still suck!


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Frodge
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Dec 21, 2013 21:24 |  #3

I like avoiding flash in a situation like the one above. But maybe that is because I've never mastered flash. When I use flash in a situation like this, it sort of makes the room look too lit. I'd rather it have the look like its dark where you can see that glow of he lights reflecting and the peoples faces sort of with the flow of the lights off it.


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bobbyz
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Dec 21, 2013 21:33 |  #4

From your signature you need faster glass for sure. Even then some artificial light can help a lot.


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John ­ from ­ PA
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Dec 21, 2013 21:43 |  #5

Actually in the situation you outline, assuming this is a static non-moving image, I would bounce the flash but go for about 1/4 to 1/2 second exposure. This allows the tree lights to "burn in". Othewise the flash over powers the tree lights making the tree appear as if not lit. Obviously this requires a tripod or other firm support.




  
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Dec 21, 2013 21:50 |  #6

I can use high ISO, I can use long exposure time, I can use flash/OCF. Whatever it takes to achieve the photo I have in mind.


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Snydremark
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Dec 21, 2013 22:20 |  #7

Bounce flash, for sure, here. It's easier to get a clean, balanced shot without having to go to tripod level slow shutters.


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Gregg.Siam
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Dec 22, 2013 08:30 as a reply to  @ Snydremark's post |  #8

It depends on what look you want to achieve.

If you just want the tree lights, use a tripod and long shutter speed.

If you want more light, or in your case, a person is there, I would use a bounced flash in combination with higher ISO. Flash alone is not going to look good unless you move it off camera or have 2. (it really depends on how dark it is)


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MalVeauX
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Dec 22, 2013 08:37 |  #9

Frodge wrote in post #16545963 (external link)
What are you folks doing when you shoot in a dimly lot room. As an example,I have a room with a christmas trees at is lit. Is it best to just bump iso up, or bounce the flash? What method do yu use to get a good image. Example person in th room with the christmas tree lit at night. Are you using high iso, flash or what?

Best method I've found:

Wide aperture (f2.0).
High ISO (3200~6400).
Fast enough shutter to not blur, but otherwise, slow enough to gobble light.
No flash.
Tripod may help, if you don't have IS on your lens.

But ultimately it comes down to lighting. How to get better lighting for the shot is the question. You don't want flash, it will blanket everything with bright light, even heavily diffused it will take away from the warm glow of low light photos, especially holiday color photos where you warn tons of warmth. So what do you do for lightning?

Use what you already have. So if you have christmas lights on the tree, get a strand of that, wrap it around something like a broom or duster, and hover that over the subject's. You get the same lightning, warm glow, and it helps with focus too.

Very best,


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Gart
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Dec 22, 2013 08:59 |  #10

I concur with Gregg above.

What are you trying to convey in the photo? It is a matter of taste but the mood can vary greatly from one person to the next.

One thought is to bounce the flash behind you and let the light come back from that direction.




  
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BigAl007
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Dec 22, 2013 10:39 |  #11

This is also a time when you may want to gel the flash to add a bit of warmth to the light, to bring it closer to the WB of tungsten.

Alan


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Gobeatty
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Dec 22, 2013 13:40 as a reply to  @ BigAl007's post |  #12

Another option to flash us to turn on available lights. I know you said tree lights only, but if there are overhead lights or lamps, I would use those. Mastering flash is also a good idea.


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JuleS57
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May 02, 2015 07:52 |  #13

My challenge is getting correctly or well-exposed images in a dimly lit banquet hall or dining room; i.e., proms, banquets, etc. Once in a while I get a properly exposed image, but nine times out of 10, the images have that murky orange, underexposed look. It's very inconsistent - doesn't seem to matter if I'm close or a little ways away. I'm shooting straight on, no bounce or diffuser. I use a Canon 430EX Speedlite




  
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PhotosGuy
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May 02, 2015 08:29 |  #14

Frodge wrote in post #16545963 (external link)
What are you folks doing when you shoot in a dimly lot room. As an example,I have a room with a christmas trees... person in th room with the christmas tree lit at night.
I'd rather it have the look like its dark where you can see that glow of he lights reflecting and the peoples faces sort of with the flow of the lights off it.

Without seeing an image, you need to run some tests. How much control over the situation do you have?
Personally, IF I were shooting one "person in th room", I'd try a tripod before I bumped the ISO. IF there were more than one like the link below, I'd try a hot light off to the side to kick in some extra light, maybe with a colored gell/filter over it. IF I had to use a on-camera flash instead, I might use a bit of tinfoil to kick the flash off to the side.
How to Take Photos by the Christmas Tree (external link)

JuleS57 wrote in post #17540485 (external link)
My challenge is getting correctly or well-exposed images in a dimly lit banquet hall or dining room; i.e., proms, banquets, etc. Once in a while I get a properly exposed image, but nine times out of 10, the images have that murky orange, underexposed look. It's very inconsistent - doesn't seem to matter if I'm close or a little ways away. I'm shooting straight on, no bounce or diffuser. I use a Canon 430EX Speedlite

In a "dimly lit banquet hall", it sounds like you're shooting at a distance greater than the flash can fill at the settings that you've put into the camera?


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artyH
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May 02, 2015 08:59 |  #15

I increase ISO and use the 35F2IS. The IS helps a great deal, but I do prefer to keep ISO below 1600 on a camera like the 60D, and I like lower ISOs even better. The 60D will often do better than you expect.




  
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Shooting in dimly lit rooms
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